Baileys Irish Cream Cake with Baileys Espresso Buttercream

Baileys Irish Cream Cake
Baileys Irish Cream Cake
Baileys Irish Cream Cake

Is there anything better than a cup of strong coffee with a splash of Baileys? Not to me! This Baileys Irish Cream Cake combines those classic flavors in dessert form. It is the perfect cake for any Baileys lover and is welcome at any St. Patrick’s Day celebration! This cake is incredibly moist, full of Irish cream flavor, and is made from basic ingredients you likely already have in your kitchen.

I created this cake using my classic vanilla cake as a base. A bit of Baileys Irish Cream in the batter adds a subtle Baileys flavor. I also included a thin layer of chocolate ganache in between my cake layers and it takes this cake over the top. This is totally optional, but I believe every cake can benefit from chocolate ganache!

But the real star here is the decadent Baileys buttercream. The addition of Baileys into the frosting adds intense Irish cream flavor! This also makes this dessert for the adults only.

The buttercream contains my all time favorite ingredient….espresso powder! It truly tastes like you are drinking a cup of coffee with a splash of Irish cream. Heaven on Earth! I highly recommend that you do not skip this ingredient. Buy a jar and use it in Chocolate Chunk Cookies, buttercream recipes, or any chocolate based dessert!

Baileys Irish Cream Cake
Baileys Irish Cream Cake

Ingredient Line Up

  • All purpose flour
  • Salt
  • Unsalted butter, room temperature – You want softened, room temperature butter for this cake so it incorporates well. Your butter should make an indention when you touch it with light pressure. I put my butter out on the counter about an hour before I start baking.
  • Baileys Irish Cream
  • Granulated sugar
  • Large eggs, room temperature
  • Pure vanilla extract
  • Buttermilk, room temperature – Don’t keep buttermilk on hand? Me either! You can make your own by mixing one cup of milk with 1 tbsp of vinegar or lemon juice. Wait five to ten minutes and you have buttermilk!
  • Espresso powder
  • Confectioners sugar
  • Semi sweet baking chocolate
  • Heavy cream
Baileys Irish Cream Cake
Baileys Irish Cream Cake

Tips for Baileys Irish Cream Cake Success

  • If using chocolate ganache, make sure it is completely cooled before adding to your cake. Otherwise you will end up with a goopy chocolate mess!
  • Do not over mix the cake batter! Immediately turn your mixer off once your ingredients are combined.
  • It is crucial to spoon and level your flour when baking cakes. Otherwise you may end up with a dense, dry cake. 
  • Use room temperature ingredients where the recipe states. Do not rush it! Cold ingredients do not incorporate fully into the batter.
Baileys Irish Cream Cake

Baileys Irish Cream Cake with Espresso Buttercream

This cake is incredibly moist, full of Irish cream flavor, and is made from basic ingredients you likely already have in your kitchen.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 slices

Ingredients
  

Ingredients

    Baileys Irish Cream Cake

    • 2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
    • 1 tbsp baking powder
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 3/4 cup unsalted butter room temperature
    • 1/4 cup Baileys Irish Cream
    • 1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
    • 3 eggs room temperature
    • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
    • 1/4 cup buttermilk room temperature

    Baileys Espresso Buttercream

    • 1 1/2 cup unsalted butter room temperature
    • 6 cups confectioners sugar
    • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
    • 1/4 cup Baileys Irish Cream
    • 1 tsp espresso powder

    Chocolate Ganache

    • 4 oz semi sweet baking chocolate
    • 1/2 cup heavy cream

    Instructions
     

    Instructions

      Baileys Irish Cream Cake

      • Preheat oven to 350°F and grease two 8″ or 9″ cake pans.
      • In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together.
      • In a liquid measuring cup combine the buttermilk and Baileys. Set aside.
      • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar on medium high until light and fluffy – about 2 minutes.
      • Add eggs one at a time, fully incorporating after each addition. Add in the vanilla extract.
      • Turn the mixer down to medium and alternate adding the dry ingredients and buttermilk/Baileys mixture, starting and ending with the dry ingredients. Be careful not to over mix!
      • Distribute the batter into the pans and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the cakes cool about 10 minutes in the pan. Then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.

      Baileys Espresso Buttercream

      • Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter on high – about 2 minutes.
      • Add in 3 cups of the confectioners sugar and mix until combined.
      • Add the Baileys and remaining 3 cups of confectioners sugar and beat until combined.
      • Add the vanilla and espresso powder and beat until light and fluffy – about 3 minutes.
      • If the frosting is too thick, add more Baileys or add in heavy cream 1 tablespoon at a time until you reach your desired consistency.

      Chocolate Ganache

      • Roughly chop the chocolate and place it in a microwave safe bowl. Pour the heavy cream into the same bowl.
      • Microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between each, until the chocolate is completely melted and combined.
      • Let the ganache cool completely until thick.

      Assembly

      • Level the tops of the cake layers using a knife or cake leveler.
      • Place one layer of cake on a turntable or cake stand.
      • Top it with a thin layer of cooled ganache.
      • Carefully spread a layer of buttercream on top of the ganache.
      • Repeat with the next layer(s) of cake.
      • Coat the outside of your cake with a light layer of frosting, also known as a crumb coat. Then put the cake in the fridge about 30 minutes.
      • Take the cake out and decorate with remaining frosting as desired.

      Notes

      This recipe can also be made using three 6″ cake pans.
      Keyword baileys cake, irish cream

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